I started writing this diary entry three times and couldn’t finish. Nothing came to mind and I mean absolutely nothing. I could think of nothing positive or encouraging to say. I thought that if I slept on it something would occur to me. Still no inspiration came. Friday dawned and all hell broke loose. Voila—instant column. I have a group of 25 cabins departing in two weeks from Norfolk and had arranged a bus transfer from Washington, DC. On Friday, the bus operator called to let me know the price had increased by $500!
I cannot go back to the group at this late date and ask for more money, so I will either have to absorb it or try and negotiate some of it. The problem stemmed from a missed deadline on our part. When we initially received the quote, we did not realize that the bus company only guaranteed the pricing for a shot time. We executed the contract after that date, and then the fine print kicked in. Even though the rates appear in the contract, the bus company is holding to their fine print of being able to re-price when the contract is not accepted by the specified date. At this point, they don’t appear to want to talk. Right now, I have a call into the general manager to discuss the situation and to be honest I am fuming at our own downfall in missing that clause.
While I am hoping that there will be a positive outcome, I am not betting the farm on it. Hopefully, he will meet me in the middle and we can move forward onto the next cruise. We do have a contingency. It will eat from our commission on the group, and it is not money we can afford to spend. It certainly was not in the budget, but we also knew going into this business that things happen—it just makes you mad when they are avoidable.
Well, I guess it is yet another lesson learned—when dealing with any contract, there needs to be many sets of eyes reviewing it to make sure ALL contingencies are covered.